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2013 Fall TV Reviews: Welcome to the Family, The Millers and Sean Saves the World All Have the Same Problem

Welcome to the Family Adam Taylor/NBC

CBS' new comedy The Millers and NBC's new comedies Welcome to the Family and Sean Saves the World all suffer from the same thing: talented casts, not enough good material to work with.

Thursday night TV is one of, if not the most, competitive night of the week. Scandal, Glee, The Vampire Diaries, Big Bang Theory, Grey's Anatomy…ever heard of these shows? The Millers might have a chance with The Big Bang Theory bumping up next to it, but it's not our favorite new comedy of the fall by any means. Welcome to the Family and Sean Saves the World have two of our favorite TV people in it (Mike O'Malley and Sean Hayes), but they deserve better than what they currently are working with. That's not to say that eventually the shows will find their footing, but they better figure it out fast. 

Welcome to the Family (NBC)
Premieres Thursday, Oct. 3 at 8:30 p.m.
Time-Slot Competition: The Millers (CBS), The X Factor (Fox), Once Upon a Time in Wonderland (ABC), The Vampire Diaries (CW)
Cast: Mike O'Malley, Ricardo Chavira, Mary McCormack, Ella Rae Peck, Joey Haro, Justina Machado, Fabrizio Guido
Status:
We've seen the pilot episode.

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Of the three comedies premiere tonight, Welcome to the Family is the most endearing to us due to the chemistry/bromance/rivalry between O'Malley's character and Ricardo Chavira's character, so we're hoping and praying this series stars to shine next to Parks and Recreation, which is one of the best comedies on TV right now, to be honest. It does have a Modern Family-eqsue feel to it, what with the blending of families and the generational dynamic, but when you follow something like Parks and Rec that is firing on all cylinders and cranking out perfect episodes, your flaws seem magnified. What flaws? We care more about the adult characters than the children, but working in a [spoiler alert] pregnancy for Mary McCormack's character might change all that. Welcome to the Family just needs a little spark to go from an OK comedy to a really good one. It can't just rely on the scenes between O'Malley and Chavira to carry it for much longer.

Verdict: DVR. The Vampire Diaries deserves your full attention, so just DVR this with Parks and Rec and you'll be alright.

Our Review in .GIF Form:

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The Millers Richard Foreman/CBS

The Millers (CBS)
Premieres: Thursday, Oct. 3 at 8:30 p.m.
Time-Slot Competition: Welcome to the Family (NBC), The X Factor (Fox), Once Upon a Time in Wonderland (ABC), The Vampire Diaries (CW)
Cast: Will Arnett Beau Bridges, Margo Martindale, J.B. Smoove, Jayma Mays
Status:
We've seen the pilot episode.

Take a look at that cast list up there. It's stuff great TV shows are made of, right? It should be, but The Millers is not.

The premise is simple, which is fine and not the problem at all: After Nathan, a local TV reporter, announces his divorce, so do his parents Tom (Bridges) and Carole (Martindale). Carole moves in with Nathan, and Tom moves in with his daughter Debbie (Mays). It's a wacky role reversal! But it's not wacky enough and just not funny enough for us.

On a network with smart comedies such as Big Bang Theory and How I Met Your Mother, we see no reason why CBS wants to dumb down its lineup with lame jokes and unlikable characters played by talented people. Will! Margo! Beau! We wanted to love this show so much because of how much we love you guys, but…we just couldn't. There are fart jokes in there, people. That's where we are at right now. Nothing against fart jokes, but if you are a viewer on a jam-packed Thursday night and debating which TV show to watch, we doubt fart jokes rocket to the top of your list.

Verdict: DVR, but only because the wonderful cast gives us as a sliver of hope.

Our Review in .GIF Form:

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Sean Saves the World NBC

Sean Saves the World (NBC)
Premieres: 
Thursday, Oct. 3 at 9:00 p.m.
Time-Slot Competition:
 Grey's Anatomy (ABC), Glee (Fox), Reign (The CW) and The Crazy Ones (CBS)
Cast:
 Sean Hayes, Linda Lavin, Megan Hilty, Thomas Lennon, Echo KellumSamantha Isler
Status: 
We've seen the pilot episode.

Sean Saves the World has all the cast members needed to make a stellar show and yet somehow it doesn't quite work. We know it's hard to believe considering the comedy features the scene-stealing ball of Energy from Will and Grace (Hayes), mixed with the incredibly talented songstress from Smash (Hilty), and Ben and Kate's master of comedic one-liners (Kellum). Despite their stellar line-up, the chemistry on stage does not come across as electric or exciting. Hopefully Hayes, who happens to be an executive producer on the series, will channel his inner Jack McFarland and put a little bit more pep in the show's step. Actually now that we're thinking about it, we kind of wish that this entire thing was a Jack McFarland spinoff, which of course, would be named Just Jack! Sigh. A girl can dream…

Verdict: DVR it. It has serious potential, but we know that your DVR space is extremely precious on Thursday nights.

Our Review In GIF Form: 

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